Edna Belle Cook
Edna Belle Cook, age 91 passed away January 7, 2015 in Johnson, Kansas. She was born on Easter, April 1, 1923, to Howard McMichael and Lillie Pearl (Hutchison) Davis in Syracuse, Kansas.
Edna lived on the family farm homesteaded by her parents in southwest Hamilton County. She attended Soddy View Grade School and graduated from Coolidge High School in 1941. (Her mother was the first teacher at Soddy View when the building was still an actual soddy. Grandma Davis left her baby, Delmont, with her parents while she taught.) Following graduation, Edna attended junior college in Garden City until her father’s illness made it necessary to return home and help her brother, Homer, with the family farm. She taught school two years at Irene and Fisher Schools and eventually moved to Topeka, Kansas working as a nursing assistant at St. Francis Hospital. She married her high school sweetheart, Ralph Lawrance Cook, on May 1, 1946, following his return from serving his country in the Marine Corp during World War II. She was baptized in the First Christian Church in Las Animas, Colorado and transferred membership to the First Christian Church in Syracuse, Kansas and then to Shelton Memorial Christian Church in Ulysses, Kansas. Because of her hearing loss, Edna enjoyed watching services with closed captioning in later years. Four children were born to Ralph and Edna Belle, Leann, Rick, Jodiann and Grady. Ralph and Edna farmed south of Granada before moving to a ranch south of Las Animas, Colorado. They moved back to Kansas in 1959 and farmed in Stanton County a few miles south of the Davis Homestead. When they retired, Grady took over the family farm and Ralph and Edna moved to Ulysses, Kansas where they lived for twenty-one years. Edna enjoyed gardening and always had a large vegetable garden but especially enjoyed her flower gardens. She enjoyed crocheting, quilting, giving literary readings, playing board games with the family, reading and completing her daily crossword puzzles. Edna grew up riding horses and even took a turn as a jockey on her father’s race horses. She always had a sewing project and made many pieced quilts, handpainted block quilts, pillow, children’s clothes and doll clothes. Besides being chief grain truck driver, referee and working on the farm, she canned produce from the garden, baked bread and provided well balanced meals each day for the family and hired men. Visitors were always welcome at the dinner table. In addition to her hobbies, Edna kept a daily journal beginning as a girl until her nineties. In later years, she enjoyed re-reading the events of her life and passed her journals on to Jody. She became proficient on the computer writing her Christmas letters and keeping in contact through emails with her family and school friends across the country. In 2001, she received a Mini Pincher pup for Christmas. Tiny was a beloved special addition to their lives until she passed away at age 11. Edna adored her grandchildren and great-grandchildren and enjoyed shopping for special gifts for each of them. Belle and Ralph enjoyed trips with family or friends to Mt. Rushmore, Monterey Bay, Padre Island, Epcot and Sea World, Glacier National Park, the Grand Canyon, northern Pacific Coast, many of Utah’s National Parks, the Royal Gorge, the Bahamas and an Alaskan tour of Denali National Park, the Yukon Territory and a cruise in Glacier Bay. When Ralph passed away in 2010, she sold her Ulysses home and moved to Memorial Assisted Living Center in Johnson, Kansas where she resided until her death.
Edna, Belle as she was know by the family, was also preceded in death by her parents and all of her siblings, sisters: Margaret (Vernon) Harper, Helen Davis, Ruth (Clifford) Schmidt, Claudene (Raymond) Schmidt, brothers: Delmont (Zelma) Davis, Homer Davis, Ralph Davis, Clarence (Donna) Davis, infant twin girl and boy, and great grandson, Dakotah Beason.
She is survived by her children, Leann of Pratt, Kansas, Rick (Diana) of Canon City, Colorado, Jody (Bill) Schone of Topeka, Kansas, Grady (Susan) of Syracuse Kansas, nine grandchildren, Melissa Beason, James (Barb) Beason, Marty (Kyla) Cook, Marci (Bryan) Ramsay, Micha Cook, Josie Cook, Wyatt Cook, Kari (Luke) Naylor, Andy Schone and seven great-grandchildren, Rylie and Cailyn Cook, Emily and Logan Naylor, Braylon and Maci Ramsay and many beloved cousins, in-laws, nieces and nephews.
Funeral service will be held at 9:00 AM on Monday, January 12, 2015 at the Shelton Memorial Christian Church in Ulysses, Kansas with Reverend Kelly Gindlesberger officiating. Interment will follow at the Ulysses Cemetery in Ulysses, Kansas. Friends may call from 4:00 PM until 8:00 PM on Sunday, January 11, 2015 at Garnand Funeral Home in Johnson. Memorial contributions may be given to the Memorial Living Center in care of Garnand Funeral Home, PO Box 715, Johnson, Kansas 67855.